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Shift work in industry and services cannot be avoided, but the adverse health effects of shift work are well known. The results of workplace physiological measurements in the Hungarian solid mineral mining oil and gas extraction and processing industry was, carried out under the coordination of the Scientific Committee on Mining Health and Ergonomics of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences, The Committee studiedy the variations of age and life characteristics of the workers, the various working conditions and environment and the heart rate variability (HRV) parameters. Our workplace studies covered 8, 12 and 24-hour shift works alike during morning, afternoon and night shifts with 2, 5 or 7 days per shift. In the evaluation, the significant differences in HRV parameters reflecting different physiological conditions, working conditions and work environment are presented for the morning only (control group) and the shift work groups. Evaluation of the results of the measurements carried out at the workplaces adjusted to the actual work schedule using known methods of mathematical statistics made it possible to investigate the effects of different circumstances and conditions. Based on the reviewed research results regarding the health effects of shift work, IARC/WHO concluded in 2010 that shift work was probably carcinogenic to humans (category 2A) - a recommendation that was changed to night shift work in 2019, based on the research results revealed in the meantime. Our studies call attention to the potential for using the results of new methods developed through innovation and to the justification for their use in occupational health.
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